More and improved ways of transmitting data encouraged us to share more and more information with the world. Hence, the development of all sorts of live streaming or lifestreaming services is no surprise. The leader of this branch in gaming industry is a provider called twitch.tv. But it’s not like other companies are just watching…
Twitch is simply a platform for showcasing interesting gaming related content, in fact, non-gaming material can be frowned upon there. In the most basic form, what we would encounter the most would be just people playing their own games and showing to the world how well they are doing. That is certainly a fun and enjoyable way of spending free time. However, this isn’t enough to attract followers. Some natural showmanship talent, funny commentary or extended knowledge is a good start if you want to make it in this business, and it is quite possible. The interesting variation in the matter is speedrunning – the intention of going through the game play as fast as possible. One of the reasons the whole idea is so popular, is the fact that gamers, they do want to connect and relate with each other. As last year’s statistics show, the most watched content in the end of 2017 was consistent with the most commonly played games in general. Based on the overall time of watched material, the leader was the widely appreciated League of Legends, with almost 70 million hours viewed on more than 1800 channels on the platform.
Great fanbase can also be associated with poker related content. There are plenty of channels where even the best players would spare their time with viewers and share their unquestionable knowledge and experience. More often than not, this is a major source of information for amateur players and total beginners about how to play or bluff, what are the easy to beat poker sites and how to pick one to start, as well as some more advanced techniques and strategies. Other than personal streams, preferably filled with useful advice, tips and guides, you got your broadcasts of some eSporting tournaments, talk-shows and programs about gaming, and similar. Streamers are often engaged in charity events, raising money for good causes (numbers say 75 million raised as of 2017).
Since its humble beginnings, the idea of live streaming has grown exponentially, so has the twitch.tv. The acquirement by Amazon for 970 million dollars and merger with their signature subscription service called Amazon Prime, the ability to purchase games through links via stream, extra incentive for the streamers that allowed them to receive commission on the sale of games they play. All that effected the market profoundly and made it the way it is today. No wonder there are others eager to take a piece of that cake to themselves. Twitch still holds dominating position – early this year Amazon announced the milestone of 5 million games pre-ordered via Twitch Prime. However, YouTube Gaming is reported to have gained 373 % in overall number of monthly streamers (over the year). Another strong contender in the race who challenges them both is Facebook. With interests toward more video content on their sites expressed last year, they now launched Gaming Creator Program to attract game streamers to the platform.